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BWW Exclusive: Resounding is Bringing Theater Back to NYC at Radial Park

In-person performances with Broadway and television stars begin this weekend.

BWW Exclusive: Resounding is Bringing Theater Back to NYC at Radial Park

Standing in the middle of an empty parking lot at the water's edge of Astoria, Queens, Steve Wargo, Creative Director of Resounding, took a few 360-degree turns around the expanse of asphalt and thought, "This is going to be awesome."

The parking lot, however, is Radial Park, a hybrid amphitheater and drive-in, complete with a stage, lighting grid, dressing rooms, concessions, spaces for both parked cars and picnic tables for those who prefer their theatre al fresco, and all capped with a towering movie screen that makes the onstage actors' live performances larger than life.

No stranger to making theater in unconventional spaces, Wargo, along with his business partner, Tony-nominated producer Blair Russell, searched for a venue outside the mainstream for their first effort of 2021, someplace unexpected and safe for all involved, someplace that offered an avenue to create a new mode of storytelling for a new way of going to the theatre.

"It's not the usual 'theater-in-a-box' experience we're offering. We're fully maximizing what we can do, given the circumstances, and along the way we're innovating; we're reinventing the wheel of what a night out at the theatre can mean," said Wargo. "Theater requires a text, humans in a space, and an audience. The rest is details. I've got the texts, we've assembled a small army of exquisite, brave actors, and then we found our space. Now all we need is the audience leaning and listening in, and voila: New York has theater again."

BWW Exclusive: Resounding is Bringing Theater Back to NYC at Radial Park

The texts are the five separate plays Resounding is presenting at Radial Park from April 23-May 23. The diverse casts, totaling thirty actors on full union contracts, run the gamut of what it means to be a working actor in New York, including a TV legend, Tony nominees, Broadway regulars, and the top talent from across New York theatre that, combined, make New York the rich haven it is, has been, and should be again for theater folk of all stripes.

Wargo added, "There is no hierarchy now. Theater is theater. The lines separating "on" from "off" and "off-off" have been erased. Our shows are fantastic, the talent is top-drawer, the experience is unlike any other. We are a New York City theater operation, so nothing less should be expected. New York City audiences deserve nothing less, no matter the circumstances."

BWW Exclusive: Resounding is Bringing Theater Back to NYC at Radial Park

And luckily for theater-goers worldwide, each Resounding performance this spring will also be live simulcast online, just as their remotely-produced Fall season was. Tickets start at $10 for the live audio stream bringing each performance to your headphones wherever you are.

Wargo concluded, "It's a tall order, trying to restart an engine that's been off and rusting for over a year, but New Yorkers are tougher than obstacles such as this. I've lived here through 9/11, Sandy, blackouts and riots. All we're asking is that New Yorkers take the brave step forward to be an audience again, to stand up for their town as the center of the theater world, to not assume that someone else is going to show up. No one is coming to save us but us. I know we'll rise up again - together."

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